Archive for June, 2010


Posted on: June 1st, 2010 by hauleymusic No Comments

***** CORPS HISTORY – 1957 *****

May ll, – Tulip Festival Publicity Drive, Albany, N.Y.
Taking place in an automobile showroom, the “Big 5 Drive” was an advertising promotion with the ’57 Tulip Court and the Fire Fifers on hand. This was the corps’ first appearance in uniform. Little Robin Ann McLean did the twirling for the corps while fifers included her mother, Theresa McLean, Carl VanHoesan, Robert Mulligan, while drummers were Robin’ s Father, Robert C. McLean, and Bill Webb. Although nervous, the corps made a good debut.

May 25. – Little League Opening Day Ceremonies, Delmar, N.Y.
This appearance saw the corps playing tunes 0n the Magee Park Ball Field. Besides a solo of the Star Spangled Banner by Mr. and Mrs. McLean, we also played Sisters, Yankee Doodle, and Kingdom Coming. A couple of days later Mrs. McLean’s picture was on the front page of the Knickerbocker News, posed playing a fife with a “little leaguer” (bat and glove in hand) looking up reverently at the American Flag. Besides those at the above event, Bob Barned and Ray Hauley were also on hand.

May 30, -Memorial Day Parade, Delmar, N.Y.
This was our first parade. New playing members were drummers Rick Ploetz, and two other boys who accompanied the Boy Scouts on drum. They were Buz Olsen and Colin Campbell . After playing on the street, we gave a concert in the park, playing Sisters, Yankee Doodle, and Kingdom Coming. Afterward, we went to the Elsmere Fire Hall for refreshments. With us in the park was the Yankee Doodle Band. This parade was covered well in the newspapers. The corps’ picture was in both the Times Union and The Knickerbocker News. Bob Mulligan and Carl VanHoesan also got their picture in the paper for attending Graceland Cemetery in uniform. Their visit was part of the “Memorial Day Memory of the Dead Ceremony”, and helped them to cut classes from Bethlehem Central, where they were both seniors.

June 29, – Firemen’s’ Parade, Grafton, N.Y.
This parade is remembered for its length (4 miles) and for the heat (over 90o). Robin was awarded a “special” trophy for best little majorette. Considering she walked the entire four miles, she proved that she had amazing stamina for a youngster of four. At the end of the parade, Mr. McLean was called aside by a fireman from Pumper 4. The old chap complimented Mr. McLean on the corps’ playing, and stated that it was the first time in over 40 years that he had been in step the entire parade. He enjoyed marching at 110 beats per minute and wished all bands would play at that speed. The parade finished at the fire hall right off the main drag. We all sat down at the picnic tables, where we could recover from the long hot parade. Food and refreshments were also served inside the hall. As the saying goes, “There’s no rest for the weary”. and this proved to be true, as we were soon called on to play for a small receptive crowd in back of the fire house. Such tunes as Blue Bells and Bonnie Blue Flag were played. Drivers included: Mr. Barned , Bill and Bob Webb, Jack Noll, and Bob McLean. Other members were Theresa McLean, Bob Barned, Bob Mulligan, Carl VanHoesan, and Ray Hauley. The next month, we received pictures from the local Grafton paper, including a photo of us.

July 4, – Firemen’s Convention, Ballston Spa.
This was another hot and long parade. We met at the Eagle Matt Lee Fire House, but had to change in a garage behind cars. New fifers were Buz Olsen and his father. That’s right, Buz, a “Jack of all trades and …” Actually, Buz deserves, a lot of credit, as he is the only member who has played every instrument in a parade. This parade also had us wondering whether we were going to make it or not. Little Robin, once again, was doing so well that her father changed his mind about pulling the corps out of the parade. Unfortunately the rest of the corps and the firemen behind were suffering. Mr. Olsen said after the parade that he thought he was going to have a heart attack during the parade. Because of this among other things, Mr. Olsen has refrained from marching since then. Most of us gathered around the Delmar fire truck at the end of the parade, where sandwiches and refreshments such as soda and beer were served. Those driving included Bill Webb and his brother Bob, Mr. Barned, and Bob McLean. All those attending the Grafton event showed up for this one too, and got the impression that all firemen’s’ parades are long and hot. Ironically, these two parades were just about the worst ever. When we got back to Delmar that night, we were able to see the corps on television on Channel 10 Late News.

July 19, – Performance, Fort William Henry, Lake George,N.Y.
A semi informal event was a combination picnic and performance. The corps traveled to the historic fort in cars driven by the Webb brothers, Mr. Barned, Jack Noll and Mr. McLean. Guests included: Mrs. Webb (Mother of Bill and Bob), Bob Webb’s wife and kids, and Mr. and Mrs. Barned who seemed to be driving to all of the events in ’57. Regular members included. Bob Barned, Bob Mulligan (who gained fame as a light eater), Ray Hauley{ who gained fame as a heavy eater), Theresa and Robin McLean, and Jack Noll. We all seemed to enjoy ourselves at the fort, and were able to relax between playing bits under the trees across from the fort. Fried chicken, cake, watermelon and soda were featured and some members (as previously mentioned) ate in grand style, however. Bob Mulligan seemed to be content with a single cheese sandwich. The playing in the fort, consisted of marching around the deck and up and down stairs, which was not that easy to do while playing a fife or drum. At any rate we all had a good time in the fort going on free guided tours to the dungeon and various rooms throughout the entire fort. Besides playing for 15 minute segments on the hour, we also played on the North deck for all ships coming into port (Ranger, Michigan etc.). At the end of the day, we left Lake George, 60 dollars richer and also richer from memories of an enjoyable experience.

August 16, – Bennington Battle Day, Bennington, Vermont.
This was our first out of state parade, and unfortunately, we were late due to confusion in the city, and almost missed the entire parade. We managed to get the cars separated, and so we all found our place into line individually. Jack Noll seemed to be the most confused and so he still wasn’t entirely dressed when he hit the street. It was quite a sight to see Jack running down the street with his bass drum tripping him up, his coat unbuttoned, and socks rolled down. Despite our confused arrival, we still made a good show of ourselves on the street and we’re invited back the following year. At the end of the parade we ran into the Chester Fife and Drum Corps, our first look at another ancient corps. Some of us were amazed at the resemblance one of their drummers had to the drummer in Willard’s painting, “The Spirit of ’76.” We enjoyed chatting with this group, and learned much about various events sponsored by the ancient corps of Connecticut. We also got refreshments at a nearby stand before returning to the Cars. The Drivers for this trip included Mr. McLean, Mr. Barned, Webb brothers and Jack Noll. Some of us also saw the famed Bennington Monument before leaving (Ray Hauley, Jack Noll and his family). Carl VanHoesan and Bob Mulligan also attended the parade.

September 8, ~ Fort Klock Historical Pageant, Fort Klock.
This trip was made without the services of Bob Barned and Mr. McLean. Drivers were Carl VanHoesan and the Webb brothers. Fifers included. Theresa McLean, Carl, Bob Mulligan, and Ray Hauley. Drummers were Bill Webb and Jack Noll. The cold September air drove most of us inside to the fort’s fireplace, when we weren’t playing in the pageant; which was based on early Americana. This year the Tryon County Muzzle Loaders, Inc. dedicated the 4th Annual Historical Pageant to Alexander Hamilton, American statesman, and first Secretary of the Treasury of the U.S.

Fort Klock was erected in 1750, and the North wing was added in 1764. It had been used as an Indian trading post, place of refuge, and as a homestead over its 207 years of existence. Instrumental in this group are Mr. Willis Barshied, and Prof. Ayres (President, and Director respectively). The following were episodes that the corps helped reenact: building of Fort Klock, housewarming and dinner, Indian trading scene, attack, siege, and defense of Fort Klock, and veterans of all wars, and a salute to the 13 star Continental Flag.

October 7, – Church Talent Show, South Bethlehem, N.Y.
The following were drivers to this event: Mr. McLean, Mr. Barned, Webb brothers, and Bob Mulligan (driving with the corps for the first time). The show took place in the Town’s Methodist Church, and was concerned with raising money. We were well received, but did make one goof on a new piece, Up The Street March. For this reason, and also because it isn’t an ancient piece it was never played again. Unfortunately, this mistake made some people mad and so we all left in a hurry. Barney and Ray Hauley still haven’t figured exactly why. Ron Steeves was at this event and offered his services on the piano. This was the first time that Ron saw the corps, and it later figured in his joining, one of our chief methods of recruiting and acquiring members. When not playing, we stood outside the auditorium by a stairway leading to the basement, where refreshments were being served and where members could relieve themselves, which was necessary for most after the long wait.